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Patrice Motsepe – Biography Of South African Mining Billionaire

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Patrice Tlhopane Motsepe is a South African businessman and mining entrepreneur. He is the founder and executive chairman of African Rainbow Minerals.

He topped the Sunday Times’ annual Rich List with an estimated fortune of $1 billion (R20.07) in 2012. Patrice became a billionaire in 2008, making him the first black African on Forbes list.

See Also: Amina J Muhammed – Biography of the Deputy Secretary of the United Nations

Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don't Have An Idea
Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don’t Have An Idea

Patrice Motsepe Background

Motsepe was born on 28th January 1962 at Ga-Rankuwa, Pretoria, South Africa. His father, Augustine Motsepe was a former school teacher who later turned a small businessman. Motsepe learned the fundamentals of business from his father. Also, at his father’s shop, which catered to miners, Motsepe got first-hand exposure to mining.

Patrice is married to Dr. Precious Moloi, a physician and fashion
entrepreneur
. They are blessed with three children. Motsepe is the brother of Bridgette Radebe and Tshepo Motsepe. He is equally the brother-in-law of both President Cyril Ramaphosa and Minister, Jeff Radebe.

Patrick obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Swaziland. He then proceeded to the University of Witwatersrand where he earned a law degree, majoring in Mining and Business Law.

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Patrice Motsepe

Patrice Motsepe Career

In 1994, he became the first black partner in Bowman Gilfillan, a law firm. Interestingly, Nelson Mandela also became South Africa’s black President that same year. Hence, the new government started promoting black entrepreneurship and empowerment.

Patrice picked up business early from his father and quickly made good use of the learning opportunity he got. He founded Future Mining, a company that provided contract mining services. The contract also involved the cleaning of gold dust for inside mine shafts for the Vaal Reefs Gold mine. In addition to that, for the sustainability of the company and to retain employees, the company introduced a remuneration system that combined a low base salary with a profit-sharing bonus.

Currently, Patrice is the interim chairman of the Black Business Council. He is the founding member and former president of Business Unity SA (BUSA), one of South Africa’s most influential business advocacy group.

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Mining Career

Patrice began his mining career in 1997, at the time when the price of gold was low. He purchased marginal gold mines from AngloGold under favorable financial terms.

AngloGold sold six gold mine shafts for $7,7million to Motsepe with an agreement to repay his debts from the future earning of the company now known as African Rainbow Minerals. The partnership continued and that marked the beginning of his wealth accumulation.

Following that, Patrice Motsepe set up a firm known as Greene and Partners Investments with two of his associates. After the 1994 elections, a law called Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) laws was enacted. The law stated that a business must have a minimum of 26% black ownership to be considered for a mining licence. Fortunately, the law was favorable to Motsepe as that cemented his position in the mining industry in South Africa.

Since 2004, Patrice has been a non-executive director of Absa Group and Sanlam. In 2002, when it was listed on the JSE Security Exchange, African Rainbow Minerals merged with Harmony Gold Mining Ltd and the company name was changed to ARMgold.

In addition, Patrice is the founder of African Rainbow Minerals Platinum (Proprietary) Limited and ARM Consortium Limited. ARM Consortium Ltd later split ownership with Anglo American Platinum Corp Ltd.

Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days
Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days

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African Rainbow Minerals

A company founded by Patrice Motsepe in 1994 as Future Mining. In August 2011, the company was named the best employer in South Africa. The company is a leading South African diversified mining and minerals company with long life, low unit cost operations. ARM also produces manganese and chrome alloys and has an investment in gold through its shareholding in Harmony.

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Patrice Motsepe Financial Involvements

In 2003, Motsepe created Ubuntu-Botho Investments (UBI). By 2019, he owned 55% of the investment at UBI.

In 2004, UBI brokered a BEE deal with Sanlam – an insurance and financial services company. The deal ended in 2014 after paying the debt involved. Eventually, UBI acquired 18.5% of Sanlam but has an 18.1% voting stake in Sanlam as its BEE partner.

Later, UBI started the African Rainbow Capital (ARC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of UBI. Meanwhile, ARC’s joint chief executive is Johan van Zyi who happened to be the former executive of Sanlam.

ARC has holdings in more than 40 companies. Some of the companies include TymeBank, BKB (an agricultural company), Afrimat (an industrial group), Val de Vie (luxury property estate), Rain (a telecommunication company), and a minority stake in Alexander Forbes, the pension fund administrator.

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Patrice Motsepe Investment In Sport

Motsepe owns Mamelodi Sundowns F.C., a Premier League soccer club. In November 2019, he bought a 37% stake in the Blue Bulls Co. Other major shareholders of Blue Bulls are Remgro (37%), and Blue Bulls Rugby Union (26%).

Patrice Motsepe

Board Where Patrice Motsepe Serves

  • Non-executive chairman of Harmony Gold, the world’s 12th largest gold mining company
  • Deputy Chairman of Sanlam Ltd
  • Chairman of Teal Exploration and Mining Incorporated
  • Chairman of Ubuntu-Botho Investments
  • President of South Africa’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry

See Also: Charlize Theron – Biography Of One Of Forbes Africa’s 50 Most Powerful Women In 2020.

Patrice Motsepe Awards And Recognition

  • South Africa’s Best Entrepreneur Award, 2002
  • He was voted 39th in the SABC3’S Great South Africans, 2004
  • Voted 503rd richest person in the world, 2008
  • South Africa’s richest man, 2012.
  • Ranked 962nd wealthiest person in the world, Forbes Rich List, 2018
  • Third wealthiest South African, 2019

Patrice Motsepe Quotes

“If we continue doing the right things in Africa, we can create a very exciting and competitive global market here.”

“Education is at the heart of achieving your dreams.”

“Youth all over the world are very hungry to succeed.”

“The system of creating opportunities for those who were by law excluded has to be created. But you mustn’t create a perception that the process is devoid of competitiveness…devoid of building a world-class, sustainable
black business community.”

“One has to set high standards, I can never be happy with mediocre performance.”

“I have confidence in mining, I see exciting opportunities in it.”

“My comrades would call me ‘a black capitalist’.”

See Also: Arunma Oteh: Biography And Career Journey Of An Academic Scholar

Business Lessons From The Life Of Patrice Motsepe

1. Take Advantage Of Opportunities

Obviously, Patrice saw a rare opportunity in mining and he embraced it. Today, his wealth can be traced to this opportunity he utilised.

As a business owner, always look out for opportunities and be fast with embracing it. This is because you never know which one will mark your big break.

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2. Partnership

One strategy Patrice used to scale his business was building partnerships. He ventured into profitable partnerships for years and he’s still maintaining them until now.

Collaboration is now the new competition. If you find an establishment that can impact positively on your business, do not hesitate to reach out to them and discuss ways you can collaborate.

See Also: Qualities all entrepreneurs must have to be successful in business

3. Investment

Truly, the value of investing in profitable ventures cannot be over-emphasised. More than starting your own business, investing in other profitable businesses can help you achieve your long term objectives of creating wealth.

Just like Patrice, find out other places you can invest your money. That way, you will have a stake in other companies as well. Always let your money work for you.

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